Old Japan: Asakusa, Tokyo Travel in Spring 2015

Date: 1 May 2015

I arrived Japan for the first time the night before and stayed at a one room serviced apartment in Gotanda, Shinagawa. The apartment was conveniently located near Gotanda station.

It was a sunny day in Tokyo that morning, and Asakusa was crowded, especially as it was the Golden Week in Japan. I have read in numerous sites on the horror of travelling in Japan during Golden Week. Having experienced it, I can say that, with the right planning, it can still be a pleasant visit.

Asakusa is a must visit when in Tokyo, giving off the vibe of old Japan. It truly represent Japan as I know it, a country which while modernized and developed, retains its cultural properties.

Sensoji

The highlight of Asakusa is Sensoji, a Buddhist temple, which is just a walk away from Asakusa station. It is not easy to miss the entrance gate, Kaminarimon and the crowd says it all.

Crowded Kaminarimon from across the street

Passing through Kaminarimon is the Nakamise Shopping Street, a stretch of shops selling souvenirs, snacks, and well . . . souvenirs and snacks. Limitless shopping opportunities here.

Nakamise Shopping Street. See how crowded it gets!

At the end of the shopping street, you will find the Hozomon Gate, the 2nd entrance gate.

Hozomon Gate and the Five Storied Pagoda
The smoke from this Jokoro is said to have healing effect
Sensoji Main Hall

Shin Nakamise

Shin Nakamise Shopping Street

Asakusa is famous for their tempura restaurants, so one should try some of the recommended tempura shops around here. As I hate crowded eating places, I settled for this lonely udon shop but still serves great food. Despite recovering from sore throat, I finished this bowl easily.

Tempura udon, yummy

Dempoin

After Sensoji, was Dempoin, an unplanned visit. This temple which is just next to Sensoji is usually not open to the public, despite having such a beautiful garden! In effort to raise money for the victim of the 2011 earthquake though, it is opened during spring along with an art exhibition for just 300 yen!

This is where I first fell in love with Japanese gardens.

Free hot green tea to drink while enjoying the view
The five storied pagoda can be seen from the garden
1st dessert. Matcha ice cream bought from Nakamise Shopping Street
2nd dessert. Chestnut and red bean taiyaki from Shin Nakamise Shopping Street

Asakusa is a great place to visit when in Tokyo. The visit to Dempoin was really a plus. Will be back here again someday.

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Author: Jennifer

Hi! I am Jennifer. I enjoy planning my own travels and love traveling in Japan - for the history, nature, temples, and the food! Read more for travel guides of places I have visited.

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